When the Dabneys, abolitionist plantation owners in rural Mississippi, announce their intent to remain neutral in the Civil War, they find themselves caught in the crossfire. In the fallout, the local community -- including kindly American Indian Tishomingo (Boris Karloff) -- comes together in preparation for the inevitable violence to come. In the midst of the chaos, newspaper man Keith Alexander (Van Heflin) courts the fiery young Morna Dabney (Susan Hayward).
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